Mrs. Barnes’ Class
Week of January 4-7
We spent the first couple of days back from Christmas break going over the classroom rules and expectations. Some of the big reminders the past two days were remembering to raise their hands at group time, sitting body basics (bottoms flat, legs crisscrossed, hands in lap, voices off, ears listening, and eyes on the teacher), and using walking feet in the classroom. We also discussed several changes that occurred over our break, such as beginning a new month, new season, and a new year. I also created a seating chart on the floor because it seems like some of the kiddos became a little too chatty sitting by their friends during large group. Table spots will be rearranged on Monday as well in order to allow them a chance to get to know other peers better. The final change I will be making is an adjustment to the cubby spots. With winter here and all of the extra clothing that goes with it, I think I need to adjust the spaces so there is only one kiddo in each cubby. This will allow them to have enough room for their coats, boots, and backpacks without getting confused with someone else’s.
Because I run my themes on a Thursday through Tuesday schedule and we came back on a Monday, we decided to have a variety of free centers for the first couple of days. I did introduce the kiddos to a new math game and they really seemed to enjoy it. They rolled two dice (one with colors and the other with numbers 1-6). The goal is to figure out how many of what colored flies they need to feed their frog. It also helped build those fine motors in their hands because they had to squeeze the frog’s cheeks in order to get the mouth to open.
We read the book Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown on Tuesday so the kiddos would be familiar with the story before our field trip to the Civic Center on Thursday. I also played a short Youtube video of the story the day of our field trip with Susan Sarandon narrating it with animation. They were all really engaged in this! The field trip was a huge success with the kiddos.
The weather is unpredictable right now so please make sure you dress your child appropriately and always plan for outdoor recess. We will go outside every day, weather permitting. The school policy states that we go outside unless it is zero or below (including the wind chill). Our website (stjosephschooldsm.org) has information regarding the temperatures and amount of time we are allowed to be outside if you look under the parent resources – guidelines/policies – playground rules – winter rules. In order to play on the playground students must have a coat, hat, gloves/mittens, snow pants, and snow boots. Some of the girls have come to school with cute dress boots or suede type boots and these are not considered snow boots because they do not keep the snow and wet out. Because it is a little time consuming helping the students with winter gear, I have adjusted my schedule so that we are able to go outside at the end of the day. This will allow me to continue to include small groups, large group, reading buddies, centers, and other important curriculum in our schedule. One item I haven’t mentioned yet is appropriate foot ware. We have already seen some snow and lots of rain lately so I just wanted to ask that if you send your child in snow boots or rain boots, please send a pair of tennis shoes in his/her backpack so they are able to change into them after they come into the classroom. We meet on the carpet for religion and large group first thing in the morning. If they do not bring an extra pair of shoes to change into, the carpet becomes wet. When we sit on that carpet, clothing will become wet and/or muddy as well.
The flu season has approached and some of the students at St. Joseph have already been ill with the dreaded virus. Please encourage your child to use good hand washing techniques at home as well as remembering to cover all coughs and sneezes. I have taught them to cover these by coughing and sneezing into the bending portion of their arms. The school nurse provided us with a reminder shortly before the break regarding common viruses and illnesses that are seen in classrooms, as well as time frames of how long your child should be absent from school. Please review these and be courteous of the other students and staff in our classroom. Please remember that even if your child has washed their hands before coming to school I would ask that you please allow us to continue our daily routine of washing hands when they enter our classroom. This is just another precaution that we use here at school. I would also recommend that you have your child wash their hands as soon as they get home, to keep our classroom germs out of your house.
Our upcoming theme is going to focus on Seasons. We will look at the four different seasons, the weather we see with these seasons, what type of clothing is appropriate for each season, and the changes that may occur with each season. Our letter for the week is the letter G.
There was a note sent home regarding cheerleading that stated it was for students K-5 . Preschool is also welcome to participate in this event if anyone would like to. I had some students last year who participated and they loved it! This is strictly voluntary but I wanted to mention it because the form does not state preschool, however we are included in the invitation.
January 15th : No school
January 18th : No school